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Open letter by Dr. Shimon Samuels and Dr. Ariel Gelblung published in The Times of Israel
8 May 2018

Paris and Buenos Aires, 7 May 2018

H.E. Miguel Juan Sebastián Piñera Echenique
President of Chile

Mr. President,

We have learned that you will be receiving this week the Holocaust denying antisemitic Palestinian President, Mahmud Abbas.

We understand that Chile has the largest number of citizens of Palestinian origin outside the Palestinian Territories.

We are certain that the Abbas visit can only serve those who wish to transplant the Middle East conflict to Latin America, with devastating consequences for the small Chilean Jewish community.

Chile has received several Palestinian officials over the last year and the aftermath of their visits have led to increasing anti-Israel and anti-Jewish activity, especially on university campuses.

We call on you, Mr. President, to use your meeting with Abbas to rebuke his outrageous claims that the Jews were themselves responsible for the Holocaust as money-lenders.

We call on you, Mr. President, to warn Abbas against inciting hatred on Chilean soil.

Mr. President, Abbas plans to visit the ‘Palestina’ football team in Santiago. A danger, in that under his leadership every Palestinian football team, tournament and stadium has been named in honour of terrorists – an uncomfortable situation for FIFA and should be monitored in Chile.

Mr. President, Abbas has defiled his people, leading them into a swamp of terror.

Mr. President, your recent election evokes a proudly democratic Chile. Do not allow it to be touched by an autocratic hatemonger.

Most respectfully,

Shimon Samuels, Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations
and Ariel Gelblung, its Latin America Representative